#MMGYTravels: Rhode Tripping in the Ocean State
The Trip: Immersion trip with Visit Rhode Island to explore the smallest state in the U.S.
Location: Rhode Island: Providence, Newport, Pawtucket and beyond.
Miles Traveled: 543 miles
Destination Highlight: Walking through the Volvo Ocean Race Village – an iconic international sailing competition whose only North American stop is in Newport.
Having worked on the Visit Rhode Island account for nearly six months, I was overjoyed at the opportunity to see the destination from our client’s perspective. That being said, before I dive in, there is one simple truth that must be noted: Rhode Island may be small, but the passion and pride that the people of Rhode Island feel for their state is unmatched. It’s felt in status calls and emails, it’s felt via the community on a @VisitRhodeIsland Instagram post and it’s felt on the ground. I’ve been lucky enough to go to Newport a dozen or so times with family over the course of my life; the idea of seeing the rest of the state that I held so dear was exciting, to say the least.
We arrived in Providence, the capital of Rhode Island, on a Monday morning, picked up by our clients, Robin and Mark. Before the doors had been closed fully and the tires had barely started to roll, we knew we were in for the tour of our lives. On our first day, we experienced unprecedented views of the city from Prospect Terrace Park, had an insider’s look at the Rhode Island State House, dined on a three-course authentic Italian meal (complete with handmade pasta) in Federal Hill, toured Roger Williams Park and capped it all off with an authentic Olneyville New York System Hot Dog.
Our evening was spent as a team underneath the setting sun on the Providence G’s rooftop, where live music serenaded us and the calamari flowed. I bet you didn’t know that calamari is the official appetizer of Rhode Island.
The next day, we woke up bright and early to head to Woonsocket to see Slater Mill, a historic textile mill in Rhode Island’s Blackstone Valley, as well as a behind-the-scenes look at The Guild, an up-and-coming community of craft beer brewers, in neighboring Pawtucket. From there, we drove through Colt State Park and admired the Coggeshall Farm from afar, where one can experience firsthand how families lived on a tenant farm in the 1790s.
Are you exhausted yet?
We finished off our immersion in my beloved Newport, where we toured The Breakers, one of the most iconic mansions in the United States; drove the Ocean Drive out to Brenton Point State Park; tasted the most delicious scallops you could imagine and walked through the Volvo Ocean Race Village. In less than 24 hours, I had conquered the Ocean State. And yet, there was so much more to be seen.
Beyond loving every minute, I felt a renewed sense of pride and devotion to my work with Visit Rhode Island. I feel intrinsically connected to the state and can’t wait to continue growing and promoting all of the wonderful things they have to offer.